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Lauren Bolarinwa

Tower Hill School, 11th grade

Your leaves bear fruit,

They whistle in the Wind,

They fall to the ground

And go back up their trees

Once more.

I love the way it listens instead of speaks.

I love the way it always knows the right words to say. 

In you nature, I take refuge. 

With you nature, I can never be bored. 

You are simple yet complex,

and all you do to amaze me is exist. 

You die, but you’re born again each day. 

 You’re everlasting, 

at least you’re supposed to be. 

But now everywhere I look you’re fading.

Fading away and fading fast. 

Not everyone sees you the same way I do.

Some use you for parts

Many desecrate your sacred lands, seas, and skies

But all of us have accomplished nothing to restore you.

What can I do? Or the better question is, what can all of us do?

As youth, there is only so much we are capable of. It is not only our responsibility to save this world but the responsibility of those who came before us and those who will come after us.  I wonder how it is that somehow as we grow older we forget what was once important to us. We become politicians, lawmakers, and people in power but forget the promises that we once made not only to this world but to ourselves. There’s nothing that brings me more comfort and joy than watching the sunrise, the glimmer of light peeking through the curtain that shines on my ceiling each morning to wake me up, and the same glimmer dimming to put me to bed each night.  While I can try, I cannot convince anyone to feel that this is their problem too, even if it is. Truth be told, I’m starting to change too. I no longer look up at my ceiling for the glimmer of light that starts off my day right. I don’t even take a glance some days, but when I do, I remember what nature has brought to me, and what I owe to it. The only thing left to do to start real change is demand it. Politicians and lawmakers are indifferent to the problem, but those of us who aren’t in power don’t have to be. Nature and its beauty is always all around us even if we choose to ignore it. We do not have time to take our environment for granted. Change starts with all of us. My generation has done alot to mobilize ourselves for the cause, but our time to be here is slowly dwindling. We stand as an example for the history books and for the world to know that we do see the problems we face, and we need to be the catalyst for change. I can’t guarantee that we’ll succeed before we turn into those hopeless and indifferent to the problem, but I can ensure that our fight has made its mark on activism and the effort to rewrite the wrongs done to our world. Preparing the next generation to continue the fight starts with having them recognize the importance of nature in their own lives. As they grow into our youth, and recognize the power they hold, they will have a much clearer idea of the problem they are called to solve. Afterall, there’s no better fight than one you’re passionate about. 

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